Pastor Talk

First Presbyterian Church

The Pastor Talk Podcast is a weekly podcast where two Reformed Pastors, Clint Loveall & Michael Gewecke, explore scripture, Christian history, and theology as an inspiration and challenge for us all to understand our world, grow as people of faith, and disciples of Jesus Christ.

Too Much Christmas? | SERIES TEASER
Trailer 7 min 38 sec

All Episodes

Today, Hagar and Ishmael come back into the story and we are quickly reminded of how messy and challenging the Biblical story truly is. Abraham and Sarah, threatened by Ishmael, and desperately wanting to realize God’s plan for their lives, send a mother and her son to live by themselves in the wilderness. In the […]

Dec 6

21 min 2 sec

God keeps his promise to Abraham and Sarah and gives them Isaac whose name means “laughter.” Today we celebrate those seasons when God’s faithfulness is so clear and the moments when thanksgiving flows so freely through our lives. God has kept his promise, the covenant continues, thanks be to God! Be sure to share this […]

Dec 2

14 min 14 sec

How long has Christmas been celebrated like what we think of as Christmas? In today’s episode, we learn that, surprisingly, it hasn’t been very long. Join Pastors Clint and Michael as they explore the nuanced history, culture, and impact that our changing Christmas celebrations have had on Christians’ celebrations of the birth of Christ for […]

Dec 2

50 min 9 sec

Today we return to Abraham and Sarah who find themselves in a familiar situation when King Abimelech mistakenly takes Sarah to be his own wife. Though this story shares many similarities with the story of Pharaoh just 8 chapters before (watch or listen to that episode here), today Pastors Clint and Michael explore what makes […]

Dec 1

17 min 49 sec

Lot and his daughters are saved from the destruction of Sodom only to find themselves hiding with many different fears. Today Pastors Clint and Michael finish this part of Lot’s saga and explore the strange, difficult genesis story of the Moabites and Ammonites. While these stories can be challenging, if we are willing to read […]

Nov 30

17 min 41 sec

Today, Pastors Clint and Michael finish the story of Sodom and Gomorrah. Lot and his family are rescued from the cities’ immanent destruction but are beset by a strange hesitation to leave. Join the Pastors as they explore this strange ending to a very strange story and explore what it has to teach us about […]

Nov 29

19 min 34 sec

A dark story only gets darker when Lot tries to protect his two guests from a violent mob by offering his own daughters in return. What can modern readers learn from the many layers of this story’s portrayal of broken human relationships, sin, and vulgarity? Join the Pastors for a difficult conversation of faith seeking […]

Nov 18

17 min 6 sec

The Pastor Talk weekly podcast will be taking a couple weeks off for the Thanksgiving break but we will be back on December 2nd for a 4 week Advent series we are calling “Too Much Christmas?” This series will be a light-hearted look at Christmas through the lenses of Scripture, culture, tradition, and nostalgia. We […]

Nov 18

7 min 38 sec

Following the announcement of God’s promise to both Abraham and Sarah, the story turns to Sodom. Surprisingly, Abraham finds himself in a kind of negotiation with God over the fate of the city. The critical question is, what number of righteous people would it take to live in the city for God to spare it […]

Nov 17

15 min 58 sec

Abraham fell on his face and laughed at God’s promise but in today’s story Sarah gets her turn to hear God’s promise and she laughs too. Isaac means “laughter” and his life becomes a living testimony to God’s faithfulness even when that promise seemed “too wonderful.” Be sure to share this with anyone who you […]

Nov 16

15 min 56 sec

God promises 100 year old Abraham and 90 year old Sarah that they will have a child and Abraham falls on his face laughing. Join the Pastors as they explore what we can learn about human doubt in the face of God’s best promises and how this story both provides an unassuming glimpse into the […]

Nov 15

17 min 57 sec

After Abram and Sarai take matters in their own hands, God restates his promise that he will make Abram the father of many nations. In fact, to symbolize that promise to the couple, he changes their names, and then gives them the covenantal symbol of circumcision. Join the Pastors as the explore the significance of […]

Nov 11

20 min 2 sec

In this series conclusion, Pastors Clint and Michael explore the many questions left behind by the missional conversation, especially how these conversations become practical in the life and practice within a church. Be sure to stay tuned to the end for when the Pastors make predictions as to what challenges and strategies that future generations […]

Nov 11

46 min 18 sec

While Abram and Sarai take God’s plan into their own hands, God has not forgotten Hagar. In fact, he promises that her son, despite all of the troubles that lie ahead, will also be blessed. What follows is a story of how God’s amazing power is able to transform messy human choices into new possibilities […]

Nov 10

18 min 22 sec

Abram and Sarai wait ten years for God’s promise for an heir to come to fruition until they decide it is time to take matters into their own hands. What follows is one of the most difficult texts in scripture and a sobering look at the lasting ramifications of what happens when we try to […]

Nov 9

15 min 31 sec

God makes an eternal promise to Abram that will reshape all of human history. Even so, that promise doesn’t save Abram or his descendants from the great struggles of life. Join Pastors Clint and Michael as they explore God’s covenant with Abram, what it meant, how the Apostle Paul understood that covenant, and what it […]

Nov 8

19 min 2 sec

In three distinct stories Abram proves to be faithful to his family when he rescues his nephew Lot from captivity and he also proves to be generous when he gives an offering to the priest Melchizedek. Join the pastors as they parse these very interesting stories that raise almost as many questions as they answer. […]

Nov 4

18 min 59 sec

Today Pastors Clint and Michael welcome Dr. Darrell Guder to the Pastor Talk podcast. Dr. Guder has written several influential works in missional theology and served for much of his career as a professor of missional theology. In fact, it was that capacity that both Clint and Michael had the opportunity to study with him […]

Nov 4

50 min 41 sec

Abram, in fear of the Pharaoh, hatches a plan to lie that his wife is actually his sister. Join Pastors Clint and Michael as they explore what this story means, what we can learn from its strange ending, and what it teaches us about studying scripture. Be sure to share this with anyone who you […]

Nov 3

17 min 21 sec

Abram trusts God and his faith drives to him to build an altar. But why? And why doesn’t the text concern itself with telling us more? Join Pastors Clint and Michael as they explore why we must read WITH the ancient writers to understand the many layers of meaning that we find in the scriptures. […]

Nov 2

14 min 38 sec

Today marks a significant turn in the book of Genesis as God calls Abram to go to a new land and promises to bless all nations through him. We sometimes forget that God’s calling of this one man was for the express purpose of blessing ALL people. Join Pastors Clint and Michael as they explore […]

Nov 1

14 min 40 sec

The Tower of Babel isn’t about a jealous God stomping around on human fun, it is about human pride and defiance in the face of a loving God. Don’t miss today’s study about one of the most mythic and lasting stories of the Old Testament, ultimately retold in the book of Acts during the Pentecost. […]

Oct 28

18 min 18 sec

Today Pastors Clint and Michael are overjoyed to welcome Amgad Beblawi to the Pastor Talk podcast. Amgad is the Mission Executive for three PC(USA) Presbyteries in northwest Iowa and he is actively involved in helping over 100 churches foster and grow in their missional identities. Today’s conversation explores how Amgad’s understanding of the the missional […]

Oct 28

57 min 39 sec

Following God’s covenant comes the surprise end to Noah’s story which leaves us with more questions than answers. Join Pastors Clint and Michael as they dive into the story of Noah and his sons. Be sure to share this with anyone who you think might be interested in going along on this journey together through […]

Oct 27

18 min 17 sec

Noah and his family walk out onto dry ground. With a beautiful rainbow hanging above them God makes the promise that a flood would never again destroy all living things. This is the story that we remember from our children’s Bibles. But did you know that the rainbow actually symbolized a warrior’s weapon? And did […]

Oct 26

15 min 42 sec

“Be Fruitful and Multiply” are more than just nice words, they are both God’s intension and directive for humanity. Now that Noah and his family have been saved from a catastrophic flood, will they be able to live into this command more effectively that their predecessors? Today we discover that God is already beginning to […]

Oct 25

15 min 54 sec

What would you do after God miraculously saves you from a cataclysmic world flood? And what can we learn from what Noah does? We discover that God’s will is beyond human understanding or even questioning and, yet, God is faithful. God makes a promise to be faithful even in full knowledge that humanity will never […]

Oct 21

20 min 29 sec

Have the Pastors convinced you that every Christian needs to have a missional identity? So what next? What does it actually mean to be missional? Join Pastors Clint and Michael as they explore these foundational questions and provide some suggestions for how every Christian (and congregation) can begin to make this missional identity part of […]

Oct 21

46 min 36 sec

The floor waters recede and Noah patiently waits for God to make a new start for the whole creation. In this incredibly deep story of God’s faithfulness and creative power, we rediscover how intricately and beautifully the scriptures draw us into the stories of ancient people only to show us a contemporary glimpse of a […]

Oct 20

19 min 53 sec

Today’s reading of Noah and the flood is among the best known stories in the Bible though, upon closer inspection, it is also one of the most challenging. Join the Pastors as they explore what we should make of the vast destruction that God brings upon creation. We learn something about our own questions that […]

Oct 19

21 min 53 sec

You know the story, Noah obeys God and builds an ark. Yet. the danger of Biblical stories that we know so well is that we are tempted to think that we know exactly what they mean. Join Pastors Clint and Michael as they explore a different perspective of Noah’s story and what we can learn […]

Oct 18

18 min 23 sec

This is the part of the Noah story that you know. Don’t let it keep you from seeing the point of the story as it was intended. Join Pastors Clint and Michael as they explore what we have to learn about God in this classic story of Noah building the ark. Be sure to share […]

Oct 14

21 min 53 sec

God surveys the world and sees that sin has infected all of humanity. In fact, everywhere God looks he sees violence, except for one man. Today we meet Noah, the one among many, who was righteous. Join Pastors Clint and Michael as they explore what we can learn from this man and how he is […]

Oct 13

15 min 26 sec

We move from the sin of individuals to a mile-high view of how that sin has completely spoiled an entire people. In fact, the sin sickness has gone so deep and wide that God even wishes that he hadn’t made it at all. Join Pastors Clint and Michael as they explore how this challenging story […]

Oct 12

15 min 18 sec

The two genealogies in the beginning of Genesis show us both our ancient family tree and build a bridge to the next major chapter of our shared human story. Be sure to share this with anyone who you think might be interested in going along on this journey together through Genesis together. Pastor Talk Quick […]

Oct 11

10 min 17 sec

Today Pastor Clint explores how Cain and Abel’s story illuminates the dark depths of human sinfulness and how this short, but important story, becomes an important bridge in the Biblical narrative to the rampant human sinfulness that is to come. Be sure to share this with anyone who you think might be interested in going […]

Oct 8

11 min 38 sec

If Christians are going to take on a missional identity, we will inevitably wrestle with who we are called to serve. In a world with finite resources but infinite need, Christians must grapple with the tension between helping those near to us and those far away. In this conversation, Pastors Clint and Michael explore how […]

Oct 7

47 min 10 sec

In a brief moment of positivity following a very dark story, God blesses Eve with two sons. Unfortunately, it doesn’t take long before we see how deeply embedded sin in the even the next generation of humanity. It has become painfully clear how quickly shame has devolved into anger, and it is not hard to […]

Oct 6

18 min 2 sec

The final verses of Genesis chapter three paint a bleak picture as the man and woman are permanently expelled from the garden and permanently separated from the perfect harmony that they were created to enjoy. Within these first three chapters, we begin to see how quickly the perfect creation has been brought to ruin and […]

Oct 5

20 min 56 sec

The first humans grasped to be like God and the effect of their sinfulness is immediate and all encompassing. The serpent, the woman, and the man are changed in both their bodies and relationships and suddenly inherit lives filled with pain, toil, and struggle. This story, though painful, continues to illuminate the deep darkness of […]

Oct 4

19 min 27 sec

Sin destroys relationships and shrouds the human soul in fear and shame. The implications of sin become immediately evident when Adam and Eve’s pursuit of “wisdom” suddenly drives them into hiding from God’s presence. Join Pastors Clint and Michael as they explore what this story has to teach all of us about our own fear […]

Sep 30

20 min 56 sec

Living into Christ’s mission has never been easy. In fact, it has always required careful attention and deliberate effort. Today, Pastors Clint and Michael explore some of the barriers that stand in the way of both our individual and communal efforts to become Christians defined by our mission. In particular, the Pastors discuss how Fear, […]

Sep 30

53 min 40 sec

In just four verses, the first humans are tempted to grasp for what belongs to God and as a result become slaves to their own desires. Join Pastors Clint and Michael for a conversation about our unceasing temptation to justify our actions and dangerously misunderstand our own intentions. These four short verses are more than […]

Sep 29

21 min 36 sec

God’s creates an entire world and two humans within it and then we learn about the “crafty serpent.” What starts as a simple question quickly leads to world changing results. Today, Pastors Clint and Michael discuss what this has to teach us about our own hearts and how we too can be tempted towards questioning […]

Sep 28

17 min 55 sec

The final part of creation in the second chapter of Genesis is not just the creation of another person but the blessing of a human relationship. Adam and Eve are created to live together in such harmony that they are completely shameless, free to be vulnerable with one another and, ultimately, their creator. We pause […]

Sep 27

18 min 21 sec

In Genesis 2, God not only creates the human for a purpose, God allows that human be a partner in the task of naming, preserving, and continuing the created order. Today we explore how this understanding of creation both reveals a God who is committed to the role of human involvement in the created order […]

Sep 23

18 min 52 sec

In this conversation, Pastors Clint and Michael turn the mission focus to you. Do you consider yourself a missionary or do you think that missionaries are only professionals trained and sent overseas? As the contemporary church surveys our quickly changing culture, we have been forced to return to some of the most fundamental questions of […]

Sep 23

48 min 9 sec

Today, Pastors Clint and Michael begin with the second creation story of Genesis which is clearly connected to the first but yet distinctive in both its focus and tone. While the first story tells a cosmic creation story marked by order and precision, this second story immediately introduces us to a God who is willing […]

Sep 22

18 min 36 sec

In six days God makes everything, on the seventh he rests. This one cosmic action not only makes it abundantly clear that God has no equal but it also creates an eternal rhythm for creation from work to rest, creation to hallowing. Join the Pastors as they explore Genesis 2:1-3 and what this ancient creation […]

Sep 21

14 min 5 sec

When God gives dominion to humanity, he creates an order of stewardship. Today, the Pastors explore why humans are uniquely tasked with the care of the creation and what clues we might find as to how God intended the creation to fit together in Genesis 1:28-31. Be sure to share this with anyone who you […]

Sep 20

15 min 40 sec